by Mike Masnick
Thu, Aug 16th 2007 11:23pm
We've been following the story of Patti Santangelo and her family's fight against the RIAA for some time -- but the latest moves by the Santangelo family seem a bit scattershot. Santangelo, of course, was one of the first people to fight back against a bogus RIAA lawsuit. This was fantastic, as many others simply settled, rather than going through the trouble of fighting the questionable charges (especially in cases where parents were sued for the actions of their kids). A year and a half later, the RIAA finally admitted it didn't have any evidence against Patti Santangelo and dropped the case (and tried to get out of paying her legal fees), but then quickly sued her kids instead. This wasn't a huge surprise. The RIAA had been secretly investigating her kids for some time. However, the response of the kids has been a bit questionable. Patti's son Robert's response included every argument in the book against the RIAA -- including a number of weak ones that could hurt his case more than help it. There are a few strong arguments that can be used against the RIAA. Including a bunch of very weak ones probably doesn't help. Now, Patti's daughter Michelle is taking a similarly broad approach, not in responding to the RIAA, but in blaming everyone she can possibly think of for the fact that she was sued by the RIAA. She's filed lawsuits against Kazaa, AOL and the guy who installed Kazaa on her computer, saying they were all complicit in getting her to share copyrighted content, without warning her of the consequences. This is an incredibly weak argument that hasn't gotten very far in the past. This lawsuit just makes it look like she doesn't want to take responsibility for her own actions.
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